Twinnie may be pushing boundaries with her music, but what the York, England native is doing works. I first discovered Twinnie’s music early last year, but I became a believer after seeing her perform at CMA Fest in 2022. She released her “Welcome to the Club” EP a few days before the festival. Twinnie’s songwriting prowess was evident, but coupled with her soaring vocals, it was an EP I listened to over and over through last summer. Fast forward to 2023, Twinnie impresses again with “The Way I Loved You” and, most recently, “Bad Man.” Since the British country artist recently moved to Nashville, I invited her to play our “Pre-famous” showcase during CMA Fest and interviewed her to discuss her move to Music City and the new music. I am grateful to be a small part of Twinnie’s journey in Nashville. Please keep reading to learn more about Twinnie and her new music.
Twinnie has Always Loved the Stage
Like many people chasing the dream of a music career, Twinnie grew up loving the stage. The singer/songwriter said, “I’ve been on stage since I was four. While growing up, I learned the more skills you have, the more you will work. So, I’ve always worked in the entertainment industry. But I’ve always wanted to do music. Remember when we used the yellow pages to look things up? I wrote to Universal and Sony when I was around six and even sent my demos.
Music was not all Twinnie loved. She continued, “I always loved dancing, writing, and acting. As an artist, I am a very conceptual writer. Even with my last EP, “Welcome to the Club,” the visual aspect is just as important as the writing and production of the song. A visual can hit people differently. So, I started by doing TV and was also a backing dancer and singer for artists such as Pharrell and Justin Timberlake. I’ve also played the lead in musicals on the West End.” West End is London’s equivalent to Broadway in New York City.
Twinnie had a successful run as an actress in the UK, landing roles in TV, film, and musical theater. However, she is in Nashville for the music. The singer/songwriter is not a newbie in the music industry, as she has released quite a bit of music since 2019. Twinnie talked about her time in Nashville so far. The singer/songwriter said, “While I am originally from York in the north of England, I lived in London for a long time. Around the end of April, I moved to Nashville with my dog, Sunny. For the most part, it’s been great. Of course, when it relates to music, there are more opportunities in Nashville. So, it’s inspiring to always be around the best as it makes you work harder and want to improve your craft.”
Any night of the week, you can walk into a writer’s night and see someone you know or meet someone new. Music City is a great networking city. Twinnie said, “Artists and songwriters are hanging out everywhere. Red Door seems to be where everyone is; as much as I try to avoid it, it seems unavoidable. There are more opportunities to meet people socially, so that’s nice. It’s definitely a town with a drinking problem. Despite what I write about, I am not much of a drinker. I would much rather have a cup of tea. With something always going on, I’ve found myself a little more than I did back home.”
Twinnie is Influenced by a Diverse Group of Artists
When you listen to Twinnie’s music, you will not be able to pick out any one artistic influence as her music is a genre-bending experience. The singer/songwriter said, “My music tastes have always been eclectic, so I like to push boundaries. Your superpower is being authentic to yourself. So, because I love to dance, I like using my big 80s Toms and 808s in production.”
Twinnie continued talking about the artist who shaped her as an artist. She said, “I grew up listening to country music, but old school artists like Dolly Parton, Tammy Wynette, and Garth Brooks. Shania was a massive influence on me and, of course, Taylor Swift. But I also listened to Tupac and Biggie because they were so real in what their lyrics were saying. It was the first time I realized the importance of music politically in what they are saying. For me, music must have a purpose. My lyrics speak from a place of truth. If it resonates with me and makes me feel something, then I know it will resonate with others.”
I am sure our readers grew up listening to the music their parents and grandparents liked. For Twinnie, there is a common thread in the music she listened to and her family exposed her to. She said, “My grandma used to listen to Dan Martin and the Rat Pack. My dad listened to Queen and Billy Joel, while my mom liked Gilbert R. Sullivan and Boby Dylan. So, the single thread of all these artists I grew up hearing is storytelling. So when I came to Nashville, I loved putting it together. People have said I am too country for pop but also too pop for country music. But when I ask them, is it good music? They say yes.”
What makes something country music or not?
Country music has become a bigger tent in recent years, ruffling the feathers of those claiming to be country music purists. Some artists still have a traditional country sound, and others don’t, but to me, what makes country music is a great story song. Take, for example, a piece like “Whiskey Lullaby” or “I Drive Your Truck,” two musically different songs that tell a story with great imagery. Can the listener relate the song to their own lives? Now when you listen to Twinnie’s latest releases or her song, “Dying Inside,” I am certain a listener has had similar experiences and feels seen in the music.
Twinnie is releasing great music, but people in the industry want to put her in a box. The singer/songwriter talked about the importance of creating authentic music. She said, “We are seeing a lot of genre blending. Artists like Morgan Wallen are smashing records, and pop artists seek to collaborate with country artists. People told me they were unsure where I fit. So I am making my lane, and that’s what artists should do. It’s introducing new audiences to country music, fueling the country genre’s growth. The argument about what is country or not, like in the UK, the perception is country music is about trucks, backroads, and beer. But it’s so much more. It’s still about the song. For me, it’s important to keep what makes me Twinnie. I don’t want to be a carbon copy of anyone. If it’s a great song, I am putting it out.”
Twinnie Strives to Prove Herself in the Music Community
Twinnie’s determination is inspiring, and she has everything it takes to reach her goals in the music industry. But while she has dreams, that’s not her purpose in creating music. Twinnie said, “I make music because I need to do it because it’s an outlet for me. But I’ve got so many goals, like I want to play the Grand Ole Opry. If I could play the Opry, I would feel like I’ve made it. But more importantly, I want to do it for my family. If I play the Opry, I will fly my family in to see the show. It would check something off my bucket list, and if I never did anything again, my family would’ve been there to see it.”
Twinnie’s loftiest goal is to have a song hit the top of the charts, and I believe she can achieve it. The singer/songwriter said, “There has never been a British female to have a number-one song in country music. I may be way off that road, but there has to be a first. But it comes down to money and promotion. Now that I am in the mix in Nashville, I will show the world what Twinnie is about. Hopefully, my songs will stand up with the rest of the community.”
Twinnie Releases “Bad Man”
Twinnie released “Bad Man” on June 23rd. It is the second song from her upcoming EP, “Blue Hour.” The single was written by Twinnie, Jessica Farren, John Kelly Dyke, and Kyndal Inskeep. Twinnie also produced the song with Barnabas Shaw. In comparison, these latest singles seem like a departure from the music released last year. “Welcome to the Club” featured some upbeat jams, but the lyrics still contained substance. So the British singer is presenting relatable subject matter in her new music.
Twinnie’s real-life experiences inspire the new music. The singer/songwriter said, “I went through a breakup, as my relationship of 10 1/2 years ended out of the blue, which is why the upcoming EP is called “Blue Hour.” It’s in the moment of some of my darkest times, but I touched on this with “Welcome to the Club.” That EP was about therapy and feelings. I think I sensed the breakup was coming. So, weirdly, I wrote about it before it happened. I am always funny about my writing because I believe it may come true.”
Behind the Music
The authenticity of Twinnie’s lyrics in “Bad Man” is relatable to anyone who has been through a bad split with a partner. Twinnie said, “Bad Man” is a battle within myself because it’s difficult when you love someone, but sometimes love is not enough. People can only meet you as deeply as they have met themselves. While I have quite good emotional intelligence, there was a lot of history between the two of us. But I’m no saint and was as much of a culprit. This person helped shape me into who I am. You go on a roller coaster of grief, but I never go closure.”
The singer/songwriter is quite insightful in the aftermath. For those who relate to her story, what she said next may lead to a better understanding of your lives. Twinnie said, “I didn’t get closure because it ended with an email and getting blocked on everything. But closure doesn’t come from the other person but from within. You have to dig deep because it triggered so many abandonment issues I’ve had. So for someone new to come into my life after I trusted this person for so long, how can I trust someone again? But “Bad Man” is a hopeful-looking song. Even though the song is called “Bad Man,” plenty of men have been mistreated by women and short-changed by love.”
More Music to Come This Year
New releases can be stressful and exciting for artists since it’s a wait-and-see fan’s reaction to the music. The singer/songwriter said, “This concept EP will be different chapters. “The Way I Loved You” was the first journal entry, and “Bad Man” is the newest chapter.” The plan is to release a song every six weeks until next year. So it’s an exciting time for me, but I get nervous before a release with all that comes with it. You feel like you constantly beg people to pre-save and work against this algorithm. You hope the music connects with people, but you only know if someone tells me. These songs mean something to me, but as artists, we cannot appreciate our music as the listener does.”
Twinnie described “Blue Hour” as a whole. She said, “This work is probably the saddest, most real, and psychotic music I’ve ever written. But there is so much depth in these songs. I’m unsure how this music will be perceived or how successful it will be. But I needed to release it for myself because if I have been through this, others have been through worse. It’s very personal, so many will relate. But how a person treats you is a reflection on them, not you. However, your mind can trick you into thinking you are the problem. With all that said, I don’t believe my ex is a bad person.”
Twinnie has hopes for those listening to the new music. The singer/songwriter said, “I hope this new music moves you. There is something to which everyone will relate. Emotion can be ugly, but it’s real. I hope people get to know me better so it’s a different layer of Twinnie. If you shine your light, you permit others to shine theirs too. I encourage people to be brave and truthful.
As I finished my first draft, I kept looking at my notes to find a way to shorten the length of this piece. But I felt Twinnie’s story and her words were too important not to share. So if you made it this far, thank you for reading. Twinnie is fascinating, and this interview was certainly one of my favorites. While talking with her, one thing that was obvious to me was that she is a person of depth. As a fan listening to “Bad Man” and hearing her talk about the events that inspired the song, I could look at my life differently.
As a country music fan, I love music that speaks to me. Whether it has a traditional sound or leans more pop, lyrics with substance pull me in. If Twinnie keeps being authentic, she will achieve her goals. My suggestion to the music industry is don’t try putting Twinnie into a box. Let her be herself because it works.